Cognitive Therapy and Research

, Volume 17, Issue 6, pp 561–577

Religious and nonreligious coping with the death of a friend

  • Crystal L. Park
  • Lawrence H. Cohen

DOI: 10.1007/BF01176079

Cite this article as:
Park, C.L. & Cohen, L.H. Cogn Ther Res (1993) 17: 561. doi:10.1007/BF01176079


Interviewed 96 undergraduates about their coping with the recent death of a close friend. Measures assessed characteristics of: (a) the event (e.g., months since death); (b) the respondent (e.g., intrinsic and extrinsic religiousness); (c) religious and nonreligious causal appraisals; (d) religious and nonreligious coping strategies; and (e) general and event-related outcomes (e.g., dysphoria, personal growth). Data were analyzed by path analysis and models were constructed for each outcome variable, showing how each of the elements of the coping process was predictive of later elements in the models. As expected, person and event variables, attributions, and coping activities were predictive of each outcome in complex ways. One intriguing set of findings concerned the complex role of intrinsic religiousness, which was indirectly related to increased personal growth and decreased dysphoria, but was directly related to increased event-related distress. Overall, the results point to the important role of religion in the coping process.

Key words


Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Crystal L. Park
    • 1
  • Lawrence H. Cohen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of DelawareNewarkUSA